Bandcamp has grown to become one of, if not the key online service that gives musicians the ability to present and independently offer their music. Up until last week, the service concentrated on streaming, music downloads, and CD sales, but as the sales of vinyl records have long surpassed CDs and are catching up with music downloads, it has now decided to put its Bandcamp name behind the vinyl bandwagon too.
According to the official announcement, “sales of vinyl records on Bandcamp have grown 600% in the last five years, and every month another 3,500 unique vinyl albums are added to the site.” In the opinion of the service, “the format’s resurgence—once dismissed as a niche byproduct of hipster affectation—is now firmly established, and seen for what it truly represents: a mainstream desire to connect more deeply with music, free from digital distractions; an important expression of fandom that was mostly lost in the transition from physical media ownership to unlimited music rental; and a growing appreciation for what is often amazing, collectible art.”
As Uproxx.com adds, “to independently press a vinyl album is at the same time expensive and risky, and that is where Bandcamp as a platform wants to alleviate the situation for independent musicians by establishing its own vinyl pressing service.”
Bandcamp explains that, “with no up-front investment, an artist or label can create a vinyl campaign and start taking orders almost immediately. Once they reach their minimum goal, we press their records and ship them to their fans.”
For its part, Endgadget.com reports that the project will run in the form of a Kickstarter-style campaign. “Once a musician’s campaign hits its funding goal, Bandcamp will press the records, print the packaging, and handle the shipping to boot. Artists will be able to set the price of their release and have full control of its design.”
First four such campaigns are already on and they include Jim Guthrie’s soundtrack for the rogue-like indie game Below, jazz trumpeter Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah’s Ancestral Recall, Juliette Jade’s Constellation, and Australian Death Metal band Mesarthim’s Ghost Condensate.